Base Oil Price Report


U.S. posted prices for paraffinic base oils are rising again. ExxonMobil triggered the fifth round of increases for 2006 yesterday by announcing markups of 15 cents per gallon on Group I oils, customers said.

Buyers said they were not surprised at the increase, given the high cost of crude oil and continuing tightness of supply. Base oil producers and lubricant blenders are still trying to rebuild inventories depleted by a series of supply disruptions.

ExxonMobils action, which takes effect Friday, was unusual in that it did not change posted prices for two Group II-plus stocks. Observers speculated that the company may have been reluctant to raise those prices since it recently imposed allocations on one of the products due to operational issues at its plant in Baytown, Texas.

Citgo immediately followed ExxonMobils move, announcing its own 15-cent hike, also effective Friday. There was no word of changes by any other supplier yesterday, but observers said they expect others to raise prices, too.

The cost of crude oil on the New York Mercantile Exchange closed yesterday at $75.21 per barrel, according to Bloomberg. That was $1.32 higher than the price a week earlier.

Historic U.S. posted base oil prices and WTI and Brent crude spot prices are available for purchase in Excel format.

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